EITB Maratoia 2021 ends on December 16 with a great solidarity day | Maratoia

The day will start at 09:00, from the call center at the EITB headquarters in Bilbao where Unai Iparragirre, director of ETB, and Marian Ibarrondo, Director of Healthcare Research and Innovation will be present. More than 150 familiar faces will pass through that call center throughout the day.

The 2021 edition of EITB Maratoia, dedicated to Alzheimer’s live this thursday December 16 his big day. It will be a special day, focused on collection and the donations, which this year will be dedicated to Alzheimer’s research under the motto Alzheimer’s is a heart disease.

There are many ways to make contributions, and all of them are already underway. Can be done online donations through the EITB Maratoia website, through BIZUM (solidarity donation: 33478) and wire transfer. For days, in addition, the freephone 900 840 750. On Thursday that telephone will be operational from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 a.m., and later it can also be called until December 18, from 11:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m.

The solidarity day this Thursday will start at 09:00, with the presence in the call center of Unai Iparragirre, director of ETB, and Marian Ibarrondo, Director of Health Research and Innovation, among others. Throughout the day, more than 150 known faces of Basque society will answer calls on that phone number, including councilors of the Basque Government such as Pedro Azpiazu, Olatz Garamendi, Beatriz Artolazabal, Jokin Bildarratz and Gotzone Sagardui.

All EITB media (ETB1, ETB2, Euskadi Irratia, Radio Euskadi, Radio Vitoria and Gaztea) make connections to the call center, and eitb.eus will be giving a live account of the money raised with all the information and images of the day. Also in social networks a special follow-up will be done.

At the end of the day, there will be a last connection to the call center with Andoni Aldekoa, CEO of EITB.

Ephemeral artistic intervention on La Concha beach

On Thursday itself, EITB Maratoia will be visible on the beach of La Concha, in a ephemeral artistic intervention in the sand. There, the artist German Cedano (Calat 33) will make a drawing related to this edition dedicated to Alzheimer’s, a work that will disappear after hours with the rise of the tide and the arrival of the waves. The artist will begin to produce the piece at 07:30 hours, and is scheduled to be completed by 11:00 hours. At 13:00 hours, with the complete rise of the tide, the work will have disappeared. All intervention will be recorded by multiple cameras and a drone, and there will be a sign of streaming to be able to see the whole process live on eitb.eus.

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Special programs on ETB1 and ETB2

From 10:30 p.m., ETB1 and eitb.eus will offer a special report entitled “Biba You Descendants”, from the hand of the “Biba Zuek!” team. Conducted by Maddalen Arzallus and Xabier Sukia, has as its main axis an investigation into genetic Alzheimer’s and its link with the Basque Country.

In 1984, the Colombian neurologist Francisco Lopera began a study on the premature Alzheimer’s and genetic in the Antioquia region, where lthe largest population in the world that suffers from this serious disease. They are approximately 5,000 people. Lopera realized that a genetic pattern was repeated among sick people. From there, he developed the family tree and managed to reach the patient zero of the disease: María Luisa Chavarriaga, descendant of a Basque migrant. His grandfather, Martín de Chavarriaga, emigrated from Usurbil to Colombia at the end of the 17th century.

The “Biba Zuek Ondorengoak” program will pull this thread in order to find the heirs of Martín de Chavarriaga. If it is a genetic disease and there is a large population in South America, What happened to those family branches that were left here? Are there still descendants of Martín Chavarriaga among us?

Based on the last name Chavarriaga, Maddalen and Xabier have focused this investigation to determine if the origin of Alzheimer’s genetic could be in Euskal Herria. The trip will begin at the Provincial Historical Archive of Gipuzkoa, where the two presenters will discover that the Chavarriaga family farmhouse is still standing and, furthermore, they will try to discover who the descendants of Martín are. They will also have the help of neurologists to better understand the disease and will try to complete the branches of scientific research started in Colombia.

“Biba Zuek Ondorengoak” thus intends to resume the journey that began three centuries ago, but making the journey the other way around.

ETB2 and eitb.eusFor their part, they will also offer at 10:30 p.m. a special program on the occasion of EITB Maratoia: “The Day After Tomorrow: Azhéimer Special”, presented by the journalist Dani alvarez.

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Dani will approach this harsh disease from different angles. For this, it will have testimonies such as that of Lourdes Pérez, journalist and deputy director of The Basque newspaper, who will tell us about his experience as daughter and caregiver of a patient with Alzheimer’s, his mother Mariángeles; or that of Aingeru Corcuera, affected by the disease still in an early stage, that together with his wife Cristina he will tell us about his day to day fighting against this fearsome enemy. In addition, Dani will travel to the French commune of Dax, at the call “Village Landais Alzheimer”, a pioneering project that brings together more than a hundred patients in a kind of village with all the conditions for an optimal quality of life for residents.

It will also show us the most scientific point of view of the disease, from the hand of the prestigious neurologists Gurutz Linazasoro, from the Gipuzkoa Polyclinic, and Manuel Fernández, from Biocruces Bizkaia. They will explain to us the medical keys, how Alzheimer’s affects the brain, the latest research advances and they will clarify certain myths and beliefs around the disease. In addition, it will have the testimony of Cristina Maragall, daughter of Pasqual Maragall, president of the foundation named after her father, which fights and works for the visibility and investigation of Alzheimer’s disease. Together with Cristina, they will speak with Teresa Gómez-Isla, a neurologist and researcher at the Massachusetts hospital who diagnosed the former president of the Generalitat.

A program full of emotion, knowledge and human experiences, with a clear objective: solidarity through the EITB Maratoia.

What is all that generosity going to translate into?

Once the collection is closed, BIOEF (Basque Foundation for Health Research and Innovation) publishes a call for grants to finance research projects. In this way, they receive requests of specific projects, which are rigorously evaluated in its scientific-technical quality by external expert evaluators, as explained by Marian Ibarrondo, director of Health Research and Innovation, at the round table ‘EITB Maratoia solasean’, held last Thursday at Biocruces. Once the projects are considered eligible for funding, a court evaluates the projects of greater scientific interest and greater applicability. In this court, in addition to scientists, Osakidetza doctors and members of the Health Department, patient associations also participate, as Ibarrondo stressed, who also explained that they are usually projects of a duration of about three years carried out by different types of research centers in the Basque Country. “In previous calls, thanks to this solidarity, they have been allocated 6.4 million euros for 111 research projects in the different pathologies addressed by the EITB Maratoia. Specifically, in the last call held, the funds were used to finance 11 research projects on covid-19“he added.

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EITB Maratoia: Project open to Basque society

Thus, through EITB Maratoia, EITB assumes one more year a active role as agent of transformation social in alliance with the main institutions in the fields of health and health research in the Basque Country, within the framework of its duty and commitment as a public service regarding the Causes and the issues that most concern society.

EITB Maratoia has become a project open to Basque society that seeks the direct participation of all citizens through two essential lines: on the one hand, raise money destined to the investigation of the disease, and on the other, carry out an information and awareness campaign.

Within the framework of this information and awareness campaign, this year EITB Maratoia has also had a participatory action that has revolved around memories, since, as the motto of this edition reads, Alzheimer’s is a heart disease, because it erases the memory and the most beloved memories of the people. Thus, citizens have been encouraged to share their memories and, of course, to send their versions. On the web a digital space dedicated to memory in which we can see, save and share the memories that we do not want to forget: photos, audio notes, videos and texts … The song “Zeinen ederra izango den”, by the ZETAK group, puts the soundtrack to those memories and to this edition, that you have already received 755 contributions between memories and versions. One more year familiar faces, anonymous people, senior centers and many and many schools have thrown themselves into action. EITB Maratoia continues to receive memories and versions, which will be posted on the web.


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George Holan

George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.

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